In a major move to jump start the UK’s cultural and creative sectors following lockdown, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden has announced the launch of a government-backed scheme worth £500m for domestic film and TV productions struggling to get coronavirus-related insurance.

The government has also set out how organisations can apply for £880m in grants from next week as part of the £1.57bn Culture Recovery Fund, which is the government’s biggest ever one-off investment in the arts.

The new UK-wide £500m Film and TV Production Restart Scheme will help to get TV and film productions across the country that have been halted or delayed by a lack of insurance to get back up and running, by giving productions the confidence they need that they will be supported if future losses are incurred due to Covid-19.

It will fill the gap left by the lack of available insurance and cover coronavirus-related losses for cast member and crew illnesses and filming delays or disruptions caused by the ongoing battle against the virus.

In the UK, the film and television production industry supports more than 180,000 jobs and contributes more than £12bn to the economy annually.

The funding will be available to all productions made by companies where at least half of the production budget is spent in the UK and is estimated to cover more than 70% of the film and TV production market to the end of the year.

The British Film Institute, Arts Council England, Historic England and the National Lottery Heritage Fund have published guidance today on how they will judge and distribute applications.

Details of the schemes can be found here